Sustainable City Transport Strategies: Tourist Perspectives on Dubai
In any tourist destination, a functioning transport infrastructure and system is vital. Transportation systems provide tourists the means for moving within and among cities. For the Emirate of Dubai to continue to be a major hub of tourism and business while still maintaining a healthy living environment for its residents, direction towards sustainable transport network and facilities is inevitable. In Dubai, transportation experts, city planners, and tourism bodies often seek the most sustainable modes of transportation for tourists and sustainable-development transport strategies. One key component missing from information in such endeavors is the opinions and thoughts of tourists themselves on sustainable transport in the study area. The primary objectives of this study was to investigate the views and opinions of the visiting tourists in their usage of different transport modes, as well as the distances they travel within the city and their views on the best strategies of sustainable transport for the city of Dubai to pursue. A systematic random sampling approach was used to collect information from 1000 tourists using self-administered questionnaires with closed and open-ended questions. The results revealed diverse opinions that varied widely across their geographic region of origin: bicycle was a preferred mode of transport for people coming from Africa, Asia, and Australia, while bus usage rated high for people from Africa, Asia, and South America, and Europeans preferred private or rental cars. Tourists’ opinions regarding adoption of sustainable transport showed that the majority, 60.1%, preferred different transport modes for sustainable development, while 23.4% preferred vehicle/technological changes. It is interesting to note that respondents with higher levels of education ranked buses/trains as the most sustainable mode of transport for Dubai, while respondents with high school and Bachelor’s degrees believed that taxis were the most optimum.